Charlie McConalogue hopeful Fianna Fáil can retain both Donegal seats

2016 poll-topper has lost 4,000 first preferences

Fianna Fáil’s Charlie McConalogue is hopeful that he will be returned to the Dáil and the party can keep both seats in Donegal.

The 2016 poll-topper is in a fight for his seat along with three other outgoing TDS: Joe McHugh (FG), Pat ‘the Cope’ Gallagher (FF) and Thomas Pringle (Ind).

Tallies show his vote has fallen from 12,507 first preferences in 2016 to over 8,300 this time.

His vote in Inishowen fell from almost 8,000 to just over 5,000 in the face of a surge of support for Sinn Féin which is set to return Pearse Doherty and Pádraig MacLochlainn on the first count.

Speaking ahead of the first count in Letterkenny he said he was grateful for every vote he received.

“I am grateful to have got the guts of 8,500 votes that I have and I’m hopeful that now with transfers it will work out and we will deliver two seats in the county.”

“You are always very grateful for the support that you get," he said.

"Elections are very hard-fought. They can go in different directions, there can be different momentums and different swings. This one took a certain momentum and the floating vote moved and moved to Sinn Féin.”

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